Ok, ok, it's now old news. It's been a busy time. I'm just about catching up with myself.
Paul and Frances B invited us over to their far flung pad in the easterly wastelands of our fair village to get the festivities started on the 23rd. Richie "comb-over" Meeson and Lynny were already ensconced when we arrived and I found myself feeling perfectly at home propping up the kitchen worktops and guzzling a plentiful supply of decent red whilst talking bollocks with Richie and Paul (and another Paul who was also making himself at home by the range).
The talk amongst the menfolk turned to matters naval, a subject upon which I am utterly ignorant so I went into the sitting room to talk about shopping with the ladies. Strangely, at the time I arrived into the sitting room that was exactly what they were discussing. And I thought the stereotype was just that, a stereotype; I now know, however, that Marks and Spencer is a retail outlet and not the historic meeting of a well known Victorian leftist and Katherine Hepburn's paramour. I feel that I have been very well educated by the good ladies. Frances is shown below enjoying a tale of sock buying in Monsoon (or something) whilst proudly displaying her well bred pair of pedigree puppies.A little later in the evening we were joined by Pipkin and his lovely missus, but at that point (and it really was nothing personal) Mrs The Millbrooker had to be taken home to bed; we were both utterly exhausted by the pre-Christmas preparations running so far behind at Millbrooker Towers and still had much to do the following morning. Here's Paul B discussing something earnestly with his left shoulder just after Pipkin's arrival:The soiree was still in full swing as we wobbled our way up the country lanes back to the civilized centre of the village. Thank you Paul & Frances for a smashing evening, for an excellent spread of yummity grub and for the everlasting flow of wine; Christmas began properly that night.